SUMMERSTOWN, Ontario – This past weekend, the Friends of the Summerstown Trails (FOTST) hosted its first ever SkiFest, a cross-country ski event for participants for all age groups, and skill levels.
The races offered by SkiFest were split into two days, with Saturday being races for adults, and Sunday for children.
The Saturday races were ‘‘loppet’’ style, ranging distances from 2.6km to 20km, with a total of 50 people who participated. René Sauvé, FOTST race organizer, explains the term ‘‘loppet’’ as “a gathering of skiers who ski on specifically groomed trails.” This style of racing is popular globally, with some having thousands of participants.
The Sunday races for kids between the ages of 6 to 13, had tracks with distances ranging from 600m to 1.6km, and had a total of 21 participants. Nine-year old Kai Van Rossum said that “She liked the hot chocolate, and the food after.” At the end of the races, everybody, including the adults, received a medal, which was a bag of Skittles hanging on a ribbon.
Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, the Skifest was publicized to FOTST members only;however, FOTST president Vic Leroux is already thinking about next year’s Skifest, and looking forward to inviting the general public.